Every week, from Monday to Wednesday, I sit on an IKEA lawn chair on the 8th floor of a Vancouver building and attempt to write one of the most convoluted algorithms I've ever encountered. After SHAD, my desire to create or join a startup in my career has increased exponentially and immersing myself in every facet of an up and coming startup such as BitLit has been a wonderful experience.
Shelfie is an app that allows users to take pictures of their bookshelves (a shelfie!) and our (it feels great to be able to say this) image recognition software identifies the books on the shelf. The app then offers discounted/free ebook versions of the identified books as long as users can prove they own the book by taking a photo of the book cover and another photo of their signed name on the copyright page. It is honestly one of the most unique apps I've ever encountered and an excellent futuristic tool for digitizing personal libraries.
A picture is worth a thousand words and shelfies contain millions. I've been tasked with reducing those millions of words down to just 5 or 6 that can be used to meaningfully describe/"tag" all the books in the shelfie. This may sound impossible (it initially did to me), but two weeks and many discussions with my CEO later, I think I have an algorithm that works well.
It has been a pleasure getting to know my talented coworkers and exposing myself to the tech startup culture. BitLit itself has been a challenging and rewarding experience thus far and I eagerly await the day when I'll be able to open up the app and see my algorithm in action.